Tsvetelina - the foster mother who teaches abandoned children to be loved
Tsvetelina Radulova is from Troyan. She is young. She is a foster parent and has so far cared for several children, some of whom have been adopted. Those children who no one wants have passed through her home, because they are "difficult" children- "gypsies". And she is fragile, weak and a fighter. Having recently overcome an insidious disease, she has now dedicated her days to regaining her lost and doomed childhood. One of the "paid" mothers to whom society throws stones that they benefit from children's destinies. However, there are many feelings behind the public truth…
Some awesome scent is trying to awaken my senses. Mmm y-e-s, cafes and hyacinths. Two hurried hands hug me hard and almost put me straight in bed. Kisses, wishes and "Thank you for having you and for really being my mother!". My daughter - my greatest wealth, my greatest critic and my inexhaustible source of love! The person who gives me infinitely many reasons for joy and pride!
Every day is like March 8th. I am a beloved mother every day! I am a happy person! I knew from an early age that I would be the mother of many children. While my friends imagined what they would look like as brides, I saw myself in the image of a mother. It seemed so boring to imagine only a single day of my life. I made a lot of jokes about it, but my desire did not evaporate.
I became a mother at the age of 21, in a small rural town. A single mother! Ah, how I hate this definition and the labels that society attaches to people like me… As the child grew, I had the support of the whole family, that was enough for me to move forward boldly. I was happy, but there was an emptiness inside me. I missed what I really dreamed of - a house full of children.
From time to time, usually around the holidays, children's programmes were broadcast on television in the homes. Sad view… Probably the mothers who decided to abandon their children did not find the necessary support in their own families. That is what I thought then… The idea of caring for an abandoned child began to ripen in my mind. I didn't know how, I didn't know who to ask, but I was convinced I wanted to do it. I have been thinking about this for years.
One morning, while searching the Internet, I came across information that finally answered my question. FOSTER CARE. I started looking frantically for materials, and the more I read, the more convinced I became that this was my thing. I met all the criteria listed, but I had to discuss this with my family. I approached timidly and put the question away, and the answer I received made me fly: “If you want it - do it! We are by your side!" Years later, I realized that for a foster parent, a supportive environment is extremely important.
And so, excited, I found the office where I had to apply for a foster parent. I was greeted with a surprise - I was 30 and a few years old. Probably too young… I was asked a few questions, after which I probably had to give up my intentions…
" Do you know that 90% of children are of Roma origin?"
" Yes, I know!"
Because for me children are children. Pure and innocent, no matter what their origin. I did not give up. I submitted the application, collected all the necessary documents, I got examined, I was trained, I had to go through a commission to assess whether I would be a suitable foster parent. The whole process lasted about 4 months. It seemed to me that the days were passing too slowly, and at the same time someone somewhere needed me. I had the feeling that I was having a pregnancy, the excitement was similar:
Will I be a good mother to another's child? Will they accept me? Will I be able to surrender to them unconditionally? What will it look like? Will I be able to part with the child when the time comes? Will I handle all this?
Questions that only Time could answer…
The trainings landed me a little, showed me the real world and feelings of all those who were treated by their own parents as biological waste.
Unloved from the moment of conception, who at the moment of their birth, together with the first breath of air, have received the first slap in the face of life - just to abandon them.
An inhuman act that leaves a deep and sometimes incurable wound in the hearts and souls of children.
Somewhere my first foster child was waiting for me. I will never forget the excitement with which I prepared for Her. The clothes, the bed, all those things she will need… I loved her even before I saw her. I had no idea what she looked like, I only knew her age. The trip to her… I had the feeling that the car was moving very slowly. I hurried to hug her and show her that someone already loved her. Documents, signatures and after the mandatory procedures I would see her. Will she accept me? I was terribly scared…
It looked like a rag doll that someone had naughtily dragged through the puddles. During her 11 months of life, she had experienced many difficulties. I hugged her, and she plucked and spat at me. These were the only things he could do. At that moment I cursed myself for the complicated dress I had chosen for her - buttons, ribbons… It is difficult to deal with them when his hands tremble with excitement, fear of the unknown and under the watchful eye of social workers. I felt like I was taking an exam for being a Mother. I remember just hugging her and telling her it was over. I later found out that the Scary was just beginning.
We have learned everything - from sleeping in a normal bed, wearing clean pyjamas, we went through "lessons" that arms outstretched to her can hug and soothe, lessons in love, trust…
There are still "specialists", "social workers", "experts" who think it is super unprofessional to love your foster child and build an emotional connection with them. I prefer to be a non-professional, but to be able to assemble the broken soul and body in a purely human way.
Love is learned only through love.
We were together for a year. We went through so much. Her survival, my survival… She became a wonderful child, giving and receiving love. She was adopted shortly before Christmas. It was one of our saddest holidays… I cried, I suffered, I was tormented. Part of my heart and soul were gone. She had taken them with her. The hardest thing is to caress and kiss someone for the last time, with the clear awareness that you will probably never see or hear anything about them.
Three years after our separation, I continue to meet her, but only in my dreams. Days, weeks, months you live like in a trance. From time to time, somewhere in the house, you see an object that belonged to your foster child, and the whole hurricane of feelings strikes you again. That tearing pain, the invisible hand that grabs you by the throat… The only thing left for you is to reassure yourself that you have given the best of yourself, that you have been an important part of the child's life and that you have shown them that the world may be good.
I went through a lot of difficulties. I give love, care. I dedicated my days and nights to no one's children. I was confronted with the negative attitude of society. Many times I answered in silence the question "Where did you take this gypsy to?" I was called a "profiteer", I was put under a common denominator with people who really take care of children for a salary. I faced misunderstanding from the institutions. I was framed.
It is hard, but I won't give up. Because of innocent souls, redeeming other people's mistakes. I will not allow anyone to turn me into a babysitter waiting for my paycheck date and running to the ATM. I will continue to be a Person, no matter what it costs me.
Child after child… all of them in need of us. Everyone who bears the scars of the "dirty hands" with which he is touched. Children in need of their foster parents who have to give without expecting anything in return. For us, the greatest satisfaction is the children's eyes full of life and happiness.
Love your children!